War of the Rebellion: Serial 018 Page 0542 OPERATIONS IN N. VA., W. VA., AND MD. Chapter XXIV.

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If any force should advance stronger than the patrols, word should be sent to Captain Schache, that he may not run into an ambush.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

J. D. COX,

Brigadier-General, Commanding.

HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF THE KANAWHA,

Flat Top Mountain, August 6, 1862.

Colonel E. P. SCAMMON,

Commanding First Brigade:

SIR: If any serious demonstration is made by the enemy at Pack's Ferry I think it probable that it is solely with a view to destroy our boats, so that they may hereafter operate on that side with less fear of interference from us. Particular care to preserve the boats, if possible, will therefore be taken. The nature of the country there will make it comparatively easy to barricade roads and hold back a heavy force, If any such makes a serious effort to cross.

Our information has made it probable that a special effort might be made by the enemy in another direction while a feint would be made at the river. Let the information be so carefully sifted that we may not be imposed upon by exaggerated reports there, and so enable the enemy to make a dash elsewhere.

Send forward promptly the news you get from the Ferry. You next bulletin from Colonel Hayes will perhaps have more decisive and definite news.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

J. D. COX,

Brigadier-General, Commanding.

ELKHORN FORK OF SANDY, McDOWELL COUNTY,

August 6, 1862.

GENERAL: We have reached this point, about 35 miles from camp, after a much longer time than I had hoped to occupy. Here, after a march of about 8 miles along a fair mountain path, made from 6 o'clock to 1 p. m., I find the men so exhausted that I fear to risk them much farther lest I may have to leave some on the road. I have accordingly determined, after much deliberation and more regret, to select a few tough, hardy men and unite them with a few countrymen, and proceed by rapid marches across McDowell to Tug Fork and thence into Tazewell, to ascertain beyond a question whether any forces are really in that region. The remainder of the officers and men I send back to camp by easy, careful marches. This course will, I think, deceive the enemy and induce him to send out some small detachments, under the belief that our forces are gone, which may possibly be "gobbled" up in the mountains.

The information now is that about 300 or 400 poorly armed men are in Abb's Valley, under command of Hounshell, and that 50 men are at Cartwright's, on Tug Fork. If this proves true we will try to surprise the 50 men and return by way of Wyoming Court-House.

Marshall was, by reports, at Liberty Hill on last Saturday with 2,500